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Post Category: Personal Blog

Flávio Britto Calil 2006, released to public domain.

One of my tarot students recently told me that one of the things she likes about my teaching style is that I have funny nicknames for some of the cards. She suggested I write a post about them, so, here it is.

In our close relationships, we often develop pet names and nicknames for our loved ones. In the workplace, we sometimes develop secret snide nicknames for certain people. We keep them to ourselves, usually, but we have them.

A nickname is a sign of knowing someone well, or at least of being aware of a particular strong trait they possess.

So it is with tarot cards. As we get to know each card personally, we may develop a nickname for it. This can be a way to help remember something about the card. It can be a way of describing the card to others.

Much like key words, it is important that you not let a nickname define or limit a card for you. You might call your diminutive friend “Tiny,” but Tiny might also be a fast runner, or a great singer. His nickname doesn’t reflect those things, but you know they are there.

Here are six of my tarot nicknames.  Don’t let my irreverence fool you. Irreverence doesn’t diminish respect.

I call Temperance the “Cosmic Bartender.”  The best cocktails involve some mixing and blending, and some careful measuring. Life is like that.

I call the Nine of Wands the “Wounded Warrior.” So often, this card appears for those who are fighting a long battle, or perhaps still fighting, even though the battle is over.

I call the Three of Cups the “Party Card.” Sometimes this is a good thing, sometimes not.

I call the Nine of Cups the “Happy Merchant.” While business is not the domain of the suit of Cups, often the image of the “wish card” is a happy entrepreneur. Life may not be perfect, but we are happy and successful.

I call the Ten of Pentacles the “Castle Card.” This card can talk about legacy and ancestry, but also about home and real estate.

I call the Ace of Swords the “Anti-Bullsh*t Device.” This card empowers us to cut through fear, uncertainty, doubt and deceit.

Feel free to borrow these nicknames for your tarot study if you like them, or add your own tarot nicknames in the comments!